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Thursday, Aug 22, 2019

Brics nations talk terror, trade at G20

Though the statement didn’t name any country, the mention of terror financing was an apparent reference to Pakistan facing heat from the Paris-based Financial Action Task Force (FATF) for failing to do enough to curb fund raising by terror groups.

world Updated: Jun 28, 2019 22:39 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
New Delhi
The joint statement said the Brics states strongly condemned terror in all forms. It called for concerted efforts and a comprehensive approach to counter terrorism under the UN auspices.
The joint statement said the Brics states strongly condemned terror in all forms. It called for concerted efforts and a comprehensive approach to counter terrorism under the UN auspices. (HT Photo)
         

All types of support for terrorism must be stopped as it is the biggest threat to humanity and harms economic progress and social stability, PM Narendra Modi said at an informal meeting of leaders of the Brics (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) nations on Friday.

After the meeting, on the margins of the G20 Summit in the Japanese city of Osaka, the leaders issued a joint statement that said it is the “responsibility of all states to prevent financing of terrorist networks and terrorist actions from their territories”.

Though the statement didn’t name any country, the mention of terror financing was an apparent reference to Pakistan facing heat from the Paris-based Financial Action Task Force (FATF) for failing to do enough to curb fund raising by terror groups.

“Terror is the biggest threat to all of the humanity. It not only takes the lives of innocent people, but has a huge adverse effect on the economic progress and social stability,” Modi told the gathering that included Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro, Russian President Vladimir Putin, Chinese President Xi Jinping and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa. “We have to stop all the means of support and help available to terrorism and racism,” he said. PM also referred to his call for a global conference on dealing with terrorism.

The joint statement said the Brics states strongly condemned terror in all forms. It called for concerted efforts and a comprehensive approach to counter terrorism under the UN auspices.

The nations also opposed the use of the Internet for terror. “While recognising that states have the leading role to ensure safety and security in the use of ICT {information and communication technologies}, we call on the technology firms to cooperate with governments…to eliminate the ability of terrorists to use digital platforms to encourage, recruit, facilitate or commit terrorist acts,” the statement added.

Modi focused on two other challenges – the recession and uncertainty in the world economy, and making development inclusive and sustainable. He said one-sided decisions and rivalry were dominating over rules-based multilateral global trading systems, while rapid changes such as digitisation and climate change were hampering development. He suggested the synergy between Brics states can resolve the effects of unilateral decisions. Resources such as oil and gas should be available at low prices , he added.

China is in the midst of a full-blown trade war with the US, and the world’s largest economy and India also have differences on trade. Both China and India are importers of oil, and have been considering a sort of buyers’ collective to increase their bargaining power with producers.

Modi also urged the Brics states to join the Coalition for Disaster Resilient Infrastructure, an initiative India plans to launch this year to help developing countries hit by natural calamities.

Briefing the media after the Brics meeting, foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale said the leaders also discussed the digital economy and domestic and international rule-making for data. The Brics leaders want this issue to be discussed within the World Trade Organisation (WTO) as data is a “new form of wealth”, he said.

India has been keen on data localisation by foreign companies, a move that has irked several technology firms and also the US. “Our position has been, and this is the position shared by all the Brics countries, that these negotiations should not be done in groupings outside the WTO.., who may start negotiations or individual countries who take positions,” Gokhale said.

First Published: Jun 28, 2019 22:39 IST

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